Lockheed Martin WindTracer system installed at major German airports
German Weather Service (DWD) has installed Lockheed Martin WindTracer Doppler lidar systems at the Frankfurt and Munich airports as part of the Low Level Wind Shear Alert System (LLWAS).
Selex Systems Integration provided the LLWAS, which includes WindTracer lidar and weather radar.
By adding WindTracer lidar at the two largest airports in Germany, DWD takes a leading role in Europe, following International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Recommendation to provide concise information on wind shear which could adversely affect aircraft on the approach or take-off path.
WindTracer monitors atmospheric conditions and measures wind speed and direction along airport flight paths. It complements radar by excelling in dry and clear weather conditions. By using WindTracer, Selex has developed Europe's first radar and lidar operational integration for wind shear detection in all weather conditions.
WindTracer has been used worldwide for more than a decade to detect hazardous winds and aircraft wakes, providing improved safety for more than one million flights. The system successfully operates at airports in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Osaka, London, New York, San Francisco and Las Vegas.
WindTracer operates by transmitting pulses of eye-safe infrared laser light that reflect off naturally occurring aerosol particles in the atmosphere. Wind moves these particles, which alters the frequency of the light that is scattered back to the system. WindTracer processes the return signal and automatically detects hazardous winds to ensure operational safety during high-impact weather.